Feed the baby. Change the baby. Help my husband get the kids ready for breakfast. Start eating breakfast. Get up multiple times to move the baby away from something dangerous (he especially wants to eat TV cords). Finish breakfast, try to sneak a shower in while the oldest washes her face/brushes her teeth/gets her bed made, start laundry, load the dishwasher. That’s my first 1.5 hours of the day. On a day when things are going smoothly.
If my husband gets put back on day shift, the baby is teething, or someone is sick, it throws off everything. And yet in the middle of this chaos, I’m homeschooling my oldest (she’s 7), preparing to start school myself this fall (I’ve got a GI Bill I’d like to use), and running a business. Additionally, I have a yet-to-be-diagnosed condition, that changes how/what I can do each day.
Here’s a few tips I’ve learned along the way.
- Drink lots of water to stay hydrated. Yes you may have to pee like a pregnant woman, but it beats the gross/bloated/dehydrated feeling. I thoroughly enjoy my sodas, but let’s face it…the caffeine buzz isn’t all it’s cracked up to be, the sugar crashes are awful & the caloric content of soda/tea/alcohol seriously hinders weight loss/fitness progress.
- Work in a workout somewhere. If you don’t have much time that day, try doing a high-intensity/short-length workout. Or, if you can’t do a high-intensity workout, set aside 15 minutes for some Pilates. This will stave off the end-of-day-guilt from not working out.
- Make friends with the timer. Set it for 15 minutes & do things in bursts, then take 5-10 minutes for something else. Write for 15 minutes, then go check on the kids. De-clutter the house for 15 minutes & then go make your coffee. Write for another 15, then check your email. But don’t become enslaved to the timer. If you’ve hit a flow in your writing, when the timer goes off keep writing! Keep going until the flow stops, or the kids are coming to you with another “emergency.” (Anyb0dy else whose kids do this?)
- Use online and/or phone calendars. I have lots of alerts set up on my phone, because I’m an extremely busy woman & I never know where I’ll be. But no matter where I am, my phone is there too.
- My last piece of advice may be the one I have the hardest time with. Don’t get lost in your business. I love my work! I love researching & helping people get their sites going…all of it. But I have to pull back sometimes & remember, I started this business for my family, not the other way around. Don’t make a habit of working through meals. Don’t look at the computer while talking to your kids. And make sure your spouse doesn’t feel neglected.
What great tips do you have? What is the best advice you can give someone who’s got a dozen things on her plate? What keeps you centered?